Both the American and National League have produced multiple playoff contenders this season. The AL currently sits with the top eight teams with at least 50 wins. The NL doesn’t have as many 50-win teams but has the only 60-win team (Los Angeles Dodgers) and only five games separates the 11th best team from the third best team. Both leagues will have multiple clubs that miss the post-season while being legitimate contenders for the World Series.
The MLB post-season begins October 1st. The top two seeds in the NL seem set. The not so surprisingly good Dodgers and the surprisingly good Atlanta Braves have cemented themselves as the two best teams in the NL. The Dodgers are still dealing with ghosts of World Series’ past, seemingly choking away multiple post-season championship opportunities. The young Braves are enjoying a young team with win now aspirations. After spending a brutal start of the decade on the cusp of a playoff run, they couldn’t make it past the one-game playoff series. Now, they’re on the brink of a special run.
The other NL playoff spots are equally interested. The always entertaining NL Central is the cause for short fingernails for Chicago Cubs, Milwaukee Brewers and St. Louis Cardinal fans. Each game during the season matters for the three clubs, as the division is normally decided by just a couple games. In the rear-view mirror but quickly approaching are the Washington Nationals, Philadelphia Phillies, Arizona Diamondbacks, Colorado Rockies and San Diego Padres. The game is about streaks, and some clubs catch fire at the most opportune time. If some of these teams can build on the early season success, the Dodgers and Braves might have a tough challenge come October.
The New York Yankees, Minnesota Twins and Houston Astros are the three teams that look to finish atop the AL. the last two seeds will be a bloodbath between the Tampa Bay Rays, Oakland Athletics, Cleveland Indians, Boston Red Sox and Texas Rangers. The Yankees did enough during the off-season to make opposing baseball fans turn on their hatred of them even more. With multiple sluggers and above average pitching, the Yankees look poised to make a World Series push.
The MLB post-season begins October 1st. With only 10 available playoff spots and 18 teams in contention, this is shaping up to be on the recent Mount Rushmore for late-season playoff pushes.